Social Distancing Affects IU Students Past and Present

Coronavirus changed day to day life for everyone including students. College campuses everywhere are mere ghost towns despite the graduation season. As the death toll continues to rise even in Indiana, social distancing has become continuously essential for all.



Indiana University Bloomington Campus

Social Distancing is a term that has become popularized via social media during the coronavirus pandemic through memes and other content. According to resources such as the Red Cross and the CDC, social distancing encompasses a variety of rules with a focus on keeping as much physical distance as possible. The most notable rule being staying 6 feet away from those around you. Stores have participated in implementing this practice with the use of signs, glass panels, and even floor markings indicating the appropriate distance.


Despite the necessary precautions being taken, social distancing has both positive and negative effects on past and present students at Indiana University. Elana Jones, a graduating senior, is preparing to do her graduation shoot. Like many others, she uses the new IU graduate Facebook frame to announce the big news to her family and friends.

Support your 2020 grad with our new profile frame. 🎓🎉Find more by clicking your profile picture on your profile, add a new frame, and search Indiana University Grad.

Posted by Indiana University on Saturday, May 2, 2020

Still, she feels like something is missing.

“It’s just difficult, because I won’t get to have that moment of celebrating with my family and friends.” says Jones.

Another senior, Khaila King adds to this:


In order to fill this void, IU has attempted to make virtual accommodations for what is now being referred to as #CovidGrads.

Originally, IU postponed commencement ceremonies, however students were notified of an upcoming virtual replacement through their emails.

Graduating students aren’t the only ones affected. In fact, students coming back in the fall will see changes as well. According to a statement issued by President Michael McRobbie, the university will be in no rush to resume all in person classes. Five scenarios were proposed about how IU will continue virtual learning and social distancing practices moving forward.

King says, “I kind of miss class like being in the physical space, certain things you can’t learn in a virtual form.”

Even past graduates are experiencing the impacts of the pandemic. Mackenzie Canavan, a former student and freelance production assistant in LA, found that her plans had been altered as well. Originally expecting to come home to Indiana for her sister’s graduation, her mother quickly booked a flight for her to come home once international flights began to get shut down.

“I knew for awhile that I was coming out, but when I flew that week, I knew I was going to be here (home) for at least a month.”says Canavan.

As a freelancer, she points out the problems there are when acquiring unemployment.  When looking at the rates of unemployment in Indiana,  the U.S. Department of Labor reports an 8.2 percent increase in unemployment claims made during the week of April 4th, which then increased by 3.1 percent the following week.  Recently, the Department of Workforce Development has broadened their criteria for unemployment with their new Pandemic Unemployment Assistance Program.

Despite some of the negative impacts, people have found a silver lining in social distancing and have incorporated new passions in their daily routines:




As the quarantine continues, people are still searching for a way to continue life.

Here are a couple of tips and tricks you can use to make the most of your quarantine experience.